Wilfredo Ramos
President
UPS Latin America
/
View from the Top

Connecting Latin American SMEs With the World

By Antonio Gozain | Thu, 08/18/2022 - 10:30

Q: What have been UPS’ main milestones after over 30 years in Mexico and Latin America?

A: UPS has a remarkable footprint across Latin America through its direct presence in countries like Mexico, in addition to many other countries in the region where it operates through partners. We serve over 40 countries in Latin America, with more than 8,000 employees, top-rate infrastructure and over 2,000 UPS access points. Our infrastructure provides all types of companies, especially SMEs, with global access and connectivity.

Supporting SMEs is one of our proudest achievements. In Mexico alone, we have over 2,000 employees and we connect local businesses with over 220 countries.

Q: How does UPS get involved with the communities where the company operates?

A: UPS aims to give back to the communities in which we work. We have provided over 10,000 hours of community service in 2022 alone. Community service has played an essential role within UPS’ operations for the past 30 years. These efforts are reflected in figures and profits, but we are filled with pride from our work to become part of people’s lives.

Q: How is big data shaping the logistics industry and how has UPS leveraged data collection, analysis and demand forecasting to increase operational efficiency and save costs?

A: UPS focuses on generating efficiencies. We have a strong engineering department that continuously innovates and updates processes. Processes that worked fine a year ago might not work today, forcing us to reimagine and recreate them to make them more efficient.

We seek to create density. Years ago, we looked to the future and knew that e-commerce was going to play a crucial role in global economies. Therefore, UPS invested heavily in its access point network. We have many UPS counters to create density and be closer to customers. UPS made partnerships in the EU to expand its network to various locations, such as pharmacies or flower shops, giving customers more options to deliver their packages.

Q: How is UPS innovating to continue getting closer to customers?

A: In our corporate earnings report, our CEO shed light on how data and technology have helped us to create density while becoming more efficient and environmentally friendly. UPS is testing a program to enter the original distribution chain of customers. By accessing our clients' distribution decision systems, we can place packages that are going to the same area together, optimizing operations. We also test systems in which, using data and AI, we can work toward increasing efficiencies.

Access points also bring us closer to communities and generate traffic for small businesses while reducing the environmental impact of logistics operations. In addition, customer experience improves.

Q: How has the company invested to grow its aircraft and vehicle fleet to meet the logistics sector’s growth?

A: UPS’ network is a global network. Our operations in Mexico impact the global network and vice versa. The company strategically invests in aircraft to improve connectivity, adding this fleet to the areas that will benefit our network the most. Last year, we continued our operation redesign process and changed routes in Latin America. We connected markets that were not connected before and extended later cutoff times from certain locations to connect with our hub in Louisville, Kentucky.

UPS has extended its operating hours in Queretaro, which is an important hub for us because it caters to many manufacturing and automotive customers, connecting them to the US and the rest of the world. UPS continuously invests and moves assets to help markets grow. We also increased capacity in Guadalajara by seven or eight daily flights, so our customers have more capacity at their disposal.

Q: How is UPS supporting the automotive industry during the ongoing supply chain disruption?

A: UPS leverages its powerful supply chain, connecting automotive companies with their suppliers and clients across the world. We help them obtain the material they need to continue production efficiently and deliver it to the next tier in the automotive supply chain.

The pandemic has disrupted the supply chains of several industries, especially automotive. Having materials like semiconductors at hand to continue manufacturing efficiently is essential to our customers. In times of low inventory, efficiency is even more important. UPS is an integral part of the supply chain and logistics is used as a tool for efficiency.

Q: How does UPS help Latin American SMEs beyond logistics?

A: Thanks to our knowledge of the Latin American market, UPS has several initiatives to help SMEs. We are working on the Proudly Unstoppable program, which helps small merchants feel unstoppable by taking their product to the entire world. UPS has partnered with several organizations, including Tec de Monterrey, to provide the necessary knowledge for these SMEs to take their businesses to the next level.

UPS takes the entrepreneurial spirit of SMEs and, based on best practices, trains them to market their product, finance the company and manage their inventory. Through different modules, we help them leverage important tools to keep their businesses viable. In Latin America, there are many startups and needs that go beyond logistics. Through the Proudly Unstoppable program, we train them to be successful.

Q: What are UPS’ main plans and strategies for the near future?

A: UPS works daily to continue connecting markets according to their needs. We are focusing on developing our people and leaders. UPS Latin America will continue to build the best possible team, with great internal training, leadership and technology implementation.

Times change and what was needed two years ago to be successful is not necessarily relevant today. In addition to the required technology, connectivity and infrastructure, we will continue to give our team what they need to be successful in the present and future. This is our main strategy. Without the talent to execute plans, one cannot be successful.

 

United Parcel Service (UPS) is a US multinational shipping and supply chain management company founded in 1907. UPS started its international expansion to Latin America in 1989 and established operations in Mexico in 1991, where it employs over 2,000 people.

Antonio Gozain Antonio Gozain Journalist and Industry Analyst